• Six teams unbeaten on day one of Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens
• New Zealand are the current title holders in Dubai
• All men’s and women’s games played on main pitch for first time ever
• Women’s competition increases to a record eight rounds this season
Defending champions New Zealand, HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series leaders USA, Australia, Canada, France and Spain were all victorious on day one of the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens 2019 at 7he Sevens Stadium on 5 December.
Dubai is the second tournament on the women’s circuit this season and the first of six combined men’s and women’s events.
The Black Ferns Sevens secured the biggest win of the day, beating invitational team Japan 48-0 with braces from Stacey Waaka and Huia Harding, as they bid to become the first team to successfully defend the title in HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series history.
Australia, USA and France were equally comfortable winners, but Canada had to dig deep to withstand a fight-back by Russia to triumph 24-19 and Spain only took the lead with time up on the clock against Ireland thanks to Patricia Garcia's conversion in a 12-10 win.
For the first time ever, all men’s and women’s games will be played on the main pitch at 7he Sevens Stadium from 5-7 December in a season where the women’s competition will be contested over a record eight tournaments.
Dubai features two stars of World Rugby’s ‘Try and Stop Us’ campaign; Brazil’s Bianca Silva and New Zealand’s Stacey Waaka. Silva and Waaka are two of 15 ‘Unstoppables’ – a group of inspiring women and girls from around the world involved in rugby at all levels of the game who have demonstrated how rugby has empowered them to get where they are today.
The action continues in Dubai on 6 December with the two remaining rounds of pool play before the knockout stages on Saturday.
Spain will again kick off the day's play at 7he Sevens Stadium, this time against Fiji, at 09:00 local time (GMT+4) before Olympic champions Australia face Ireland.